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University of Illinois Extension

U of I Extension Volunteers Harvest Produce for Local Food Pantries

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 12, 2013

More than 1,400 Pounds of Food Reaped for Donations

ST. CHARLES, Ill. – University of Illinois Extension volunteers and staff harvested more than 1,400 pounds of produce at the University of Illinois Horticulture Research Farm in St. Charles, and the fresh food was donated to four Kane County food pantries last week.

More than 15 people – including University of Illinois Extension Master Gardeners, Kane County 4-H representatives, and University of Illinois Extension staff – volunteered time Thursday evening to pick tomatoes, peppers and corn at the farm, which is located at Route 38 and Peck Road in St. Charles.

Led by Farm Manager Shelby Henning, the group harvested 665 pounds of tomatoes, 25 pounds of peppers and 800 pounds of corn, or about 1,455 ears. Volunteers delivered the fresh produce to four locations in Kane County – Aurora Interfaith Food Pantry, Batavia Interfaith Food Pantry, Food for Greater Elgin, and Marie Wilkinson Food Pantry in Aurora.

"It is much better off on families' tables than spoiling here," Henning said. "We are happy to share this food with our community, and we are thankful to have University of Illinois Extension volunteers to help pick and deliver it."

The produce was surplus from student plots cultivated as part of the New Illinois Fruit and Vegetable Farmers program from the University of Illinois, said Henning.

To learn more about the program, visit www.newillinoisfarmers.org, or contact Dr. Richard Weinzierl at weinzier@illinois.edu or Mary Hosier at mhosier@illinois.edu.

University of Illinois Extension Unit 5 serves DuPage, Kane and Kendall counties through educational programs that promote a healthy society, food security and safety, environmental stewardship, sustainable and profitable food production and marketing systems, and enhancement of youth, family and community well-being. For more information about University of Illinois Extension programs, contact 630-584-6166 or visit http://web.extension.illinois.edu/dkk/.

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University of Illinois Extension provides equal opportunities in programs and employment.

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